Culture

War Games

The center of excellence in undersea technology has the technology. Its mission? To create underwater devices that will defend us here and abroad.

There are reminders of the country’s  wars all around the northwest side of Newport. There is the blue span of Narragansett Bay, finally held by the French during the Revolution; at the Bay’s shore rest two decommissioned aircraft carriers, immense at their moorings. Overlooking this pair of Cold War survivors is the brick-and-glass campus of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center…

Deep Waters

The Coastal Resources Management Council affects everyone who works or plays on the water, but this powerful government agency can’t get its act together.

The lines of the shoreline here are distinctly unnatural. The forty-five acres jut at right angles into the Providence River beneath the bluff of East Providence, just south of Providence’s downtown skyline.Called the South Quay, it was originally going to be a bustling port terminal run by the Providence & Worcester Railroad. More than thirty years ago, the company dumped…

Getaways on a Time

There’s nothing worse than feeling rushed on vacation. But in our 9 to 5 world, sometimes you have to keep your eye on the clock — even when you’re off it. When vacation need is high but hours are few, these five quick escapes are all doable in a couple of days. And to combat the stress factor, we’ve designed…

32 things you must do this summer!

1 Dine outsideHere’s what dining al fresco means in my childhood home of Manhattan: you’re wedged out on a sidewalk with thirty other people, the sun beating mercilessly on your head while the rumbling heat from the subway creeps up around your feet. The section is roped off, not for the sake of containment but to keep meanderers from spitting…

Weather You’re Right or Weather You’re Wrong

It’s a Friday afternoon in June, and the weather for the weekend looks iffy. That’s about to drive Gary Calvino nuts. “I’m going crazy,” he says, because it’s his job as development director to decide whether WaterFire is on or off. “I’m on the Internet checking Weather Underground, Weather-dot-com, AccuWeather, almost on an hourly basis. We try to look at…

How Green are We?

The word “green” gets tossed around a lot these days, but it’s a hard one to define. And really the question “How green is Rhode Island?” comprises a bunch of questions: How clean is our air? Our water? How much energy do we use and where does it come from? How much trash are we producing? And how much are…

A Pantry in the Backyard

Yikes! That beautiful red pepper you’re about to drop in your stir-fry? It could have a history to make your toes curl. Experts tell us the old approach is what’s new and it’s finally captured consumers’ attention. Kitchen gardens not unlike the ones our ancestors tended are coming back strong. As with the best dishes, the usual ingredients are simple…

Inside Dirt

Here’s a handful of plant suggestions to get you started. A kitchen garden is an expression of the owner’s taste. Fill your beds and borders only with things that please your palate and your senses. If you hate spinach, nix it and plant beans or edible nasturtiums. Or take just a baby step with a miniature garden of assorted salad…

The Bay is Their Oyster

Mention commercial fisheries and most Rhode Islanders will think of Galilee. From the rocks that line the channel next to George’s, we watch the well-worn work boats steam past, draped in nets and gear, rocking in the chop, heading out to test their luck against wind and waves and the caprice of the ever-elusive finfish. But north of that narrow…

Shady Characters

Shade garden. It sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it? When we think of flowers, most of us envision sun. But here’s the thing: shade gardens are some of the most beautiful around. Dappled with light, not blown out, the colors and textures are enhanced. Dramatic seasonal variations in leaf and bark replace the razzle-dazzle of flowers that are here today,…