The Night the Martian ‘Death Ray’ Missed Haverhill; ‘War of the Worlds’ Airs Monday

Editor’s Note: This is an update of earlier versions of this story. Marking the 85th anniversary of the historic broadcast, 97.9 WHAV airs the original “Mercury Theater on the Air” presentation of the “War of the Worlds,” Monday, Oct. 30, with an encore three hours later at 1 a.m. 

The supposed Martian invasion of Earth and its aftermath 83 years ago this week didn’t seem to faze Greater Haverhill residents. In fact, most locals didn’t even know about the “death rays” that destroyed metropolitan New York the night before. That is, until they picked up their newspapers Monday, Oct.

Podcast: Haverhill Exchange Club’s Annual Hillie Hunt Sends Teams Scurrying Next Week

An old-fashioned scavenger hunt, using modern technology, sends teams traveling around town next week in search of the most clues to win. Haverhill Exchange Club’s annual Hillie Hunt offers prizes for first, second and third place as well as for best Halloween costume. There’s also an after-party and 50/50 raffle. Exchange Club member Michael Joy, a recent guest on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program explains participants will be using a phone app. “You just log into the app and then the questions start to pop up.

A Candid Assessment of the State of Local News

I’m going to frank with you. WHAV would normally be starting its fall fundraising campaign this week, but we’ve had to have all hands on deck to cover news from carjackings to a gubernatorial visit and the opening of a school container farm to updates on the most consequential local election in the city’s history. Let’s be clear, nonprofit WHAV is a multimedia operation. This means staff not only are conducting interviews and attending newsmaking events, but also recording and editing sound for the radio and podcasts and taking photographs for the web, social media and eNewspaper Wavelengths. WHAV also has to equip and maintain downtown studios as well as the Silver Hill transmitting facilities, ensure audio streams online 24-7 and more.

Podcast: Trahan Says Programs Like Haverhill Fire Staffing Grant at Risk with Federal Shutdown

Eyes are on Washington to see how Congress deals with a budget deadline and looming shutdown of the federal government. Congresswoman Lori Trahan, went live Thursday on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program, noting the Haverhill Fire Department recently benefited from an operating federal government. However, she said, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy now has to choose between the country and those Republicans who would take away his leadership position. “The House could put that bill on the floor and it would get a majority of votes from Democrats and Republicans, but you know there is a small group of Republicans right now that just aren’t allowing that to happen. Frankly, Speaker McCarthy is having to make a decision on what is more important to him, the country or his speakership.

Podcast: Haverhill Author Releases ‘Killer Dreams’ Novel Even as he Gives Life Himself

A Haverhill author’s latest novel focuses on loss of life following an accident even as he regains his strength in real life after personally giving the gift of life. Vincent Donovan has two stories to tell. His new book is called “Killer Dreams,” while his kidney is helping someone fulfill their own dreams. He talked about both during his recent appearance on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program. “I just sat down to watch the Patriots game last fall and saw a post from my neighbor about her cousin who is up in New Hampshire—a dad with a 9-year-old daughter. I stepped forward, start the long journey.

Podcast: All Five Haverhill Mayoral Candidates Answer Questions About Pressing Issues

All five candidates running to become Haverhill’s next mayor have spoken directly to listeners during a series of live interviews with Win Damon, host of WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program. All interviews, running about 10 minutes each, are now available to be heard on demand at and all popular podcast sites. Arranged in ballot order, the candidates are Melinda E. Barrett, Scott W. Wood Jr., Guy E. Cooper, Debra M. Campanile and George Eleftheriou. Instead of generic questions, WHAV asked each candidate on Tuesday’s preliminary election ballot about specific and pressing issues. They were asked the following questions as time allowed:

For years, financial constraints forced the city put off buying equipment, building improvements and construction of new schools and a Broadway-area fire station.

Podcast: MeVa Transit Extends Six Bus Routes Two Hours Later Into the Night with Added State Money

MeVa Transit’s six highest bus ridership routes will be running two hours later starting tomorrow thanks, in part, to a $56 million statewide budget increase for regional transit authorities. MeVa Transit Administrator Noah Berger, a recent guest on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program, said he also has more drivers, helping support extended hours. “With our September schedule, we’ll be extending service on six routes, including two in Haverhill, to 9 at night. One of the areas we’ve heard about from our riders, and community groups in general, is that we stop running too early. We stop at 6 in Haverhill and 7 in Lawrence, and life just doesn’t stop at 6 or 7 o’clock at night,” he said.

Podcast: Pentucket Bank Stadium Branch Renovations in Progress; 24 Operations Offices to Move There

Those traveling along Lincoln Avenue by Haverhill Stadium may have noticed some changes taking place. The stadium branch of Pentucket Bank, at 120 Lincoln Ave., is undergoing renovations that take into account the times as well as plan for the future. Recent guests on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program, Pentucket Bank CEO, and River Run Bancorp President Jonathan H. Dowst and Pentucket Bank President Eric G. Leurteritz discussed the project. Leurteritz said the outside of the building is in great shape, but changes are being made inside. “It is going through a significant renovation.