One Square Mile: Block Island

Photo by: Catherine Welch

By KRISTIN GOURLAY http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1019392.mp3 Block island Forum BLOCK ISLAND, RI – A Rhode Island Public Radio community forum about Block Island and the rise of tick-borne diseases. Lyme disease and, now, babesiosis have had a huge impact on the island. And babesiosis is emerging as a threat even beyond the island. We talk about that emerging threat and what scientists and medical professionals are learning about it, hear some updates on...

By RIPR LISTENER http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1019195.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – Several listeners responded to our request for Block Island memories. One listener gave us more than 20 memories, another told us how he met his wife on the island, and another gave us a fascinating story of adventure on the island. Not all of the memories made it on the air, so we laced them together for this special addition to our online coverage of One Square Mile: Block...

Photo by Bradley Campbell.

By BRADLEY CAMPBELL http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018870.mp3 Providence, RI – In 1875, workers constructed the Southeast Lighthouse on the edge of the Mohegan Bluffs. It worked for more than a century to help keep sailors safe. But in the 1990s, erosion forced the islanders to make a decision: save the lighthouse, or let it fall into the sea. Islanders chose the former. And the Southeast Lighthouse continues to shine. But the story of the Southeast...

Photo courtesy of Block Island Conservancy.

By BRADLEY CAMPBELL http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018871.mp3 Providence, RI – Over the last 40 years or so, residents of Block Island have worked to conserve nearly half of the island. But there's still more work to do. So Justin Lewis who is continuing the effort. Lewis is in his thirties, and a surfer. But he's also the next generation of a family that's synonymous with conservation on the island. You could say the Lewis family on Block Island is to...

By Aaron Read PROVIDENCE, RI – Join us for a forum about research into tick-borne diseases like Lyme Disease and Babesiosis, hosted by RIPR's Kristin Gourlay. It's at Smugglers Cove (next to Payne's Killer Donuts) on Saturday September 8th from 1-2pm. Since there are no addresses on the island, here's a handy map that shows the path from the ferry docks to Smugglers Cove. It's about a 15 or 20 minute walk. You'll pass the WCRI/WJZS radio tower on your left. We'll have signs and banners on the...

Photo by: IAN DONNIS

By IAN DONNIS http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1019071.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – As part of our `One Square Mile' reports on Block Island RIPR talks with Block Island top elected official First Warden Kim Gaffett. Her family has deep roots on the island, and Gaffett has been interested in local government since she was a schoolgirl. As she told Rhode Island Public Radio's Ian Donnis on a recent drive around Block Island, the demands facing the island change...

Photo by: CATHERINE WELCH

By CATHERINE WELCH http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1019072.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – Turns out that on Block Island, nobody really knows the address of where they work or live because there are no addresses on Block Island. This intrigued Rhode Island Public Radio's Catherine Welch so as part of our series One Square Mile: Block Island, Catherine sat down with editor of The Block Island Times, Pippa Jack, to find out how anyone on the island gets mail. Pippa...

Photo by: KRISTIN GOURLAY

By KRISTIN GOURLAY http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1019014.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – As part of our series One Square Mile: Block Island, we've been exploring the rise of diseases spread by ticks, which are a big problem on the island. But the problem is spreading to the mainland. RIPR health care reporter Kristin Gourlay speaks with our Morning Edition host Chuck Hinman about the rising threat of babesiosis in the region's blood supply. Take a listen to the...

Photo by: Elisabeth Harrison

By ELISABETH HARRISON http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1019007.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – On Block Island, a single public school serves all of the island's year-round residents. Kindergartners and high school seniors have classes in the same building and eat lunch in the same cafeteria. It's a close community, but it's also one of the most expensive public schools in the state. At about 7:30 on a typical weekday morning, a strong wind blows off Rhode Island Sound...

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

By KRISTIN GOURLAY http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018959.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – There's another, even more serious disease than Lyme on Block Island. That disease is called babesiosis. Like Lyme disease, babesiosis will make you think you have the flu - fever, chills, body aches, sweats. But if your immune system is already weak, it can kill you. It's spread by a parasite. And you can only get it from the bite of an infected deer tick. Now, most people try...

Photo by: Catherine Welch

By CATHERINE WELCH http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018973.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – Most residents on Block Island support the construction of a five-turbine wind farm off the coast because it will reduce their power bills, which are some of the highest in the nation. The project has at least one vocal critic, resident and former Redmond, WA mayor Rosemarie Ives. Even though most of the hurdles have been cleared and construction is expected to start next year...

Block Island Power Company supplies electricity for the entire island.

By CATHERINE WELCH http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018674.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – Block Islanders are paying some of the highest costs for electricity in the nation. And a small-scale wind farm is planned to go up just off the island to provide some relief to those bills that can climb into the tens of thousands for some businesses. As part of our One Square Mile series focused on Block Island, we knocked on doors to talk with residents about business owners...

By SCOTT MACKAY http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018880.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – As part of our `One Square Mile' reports on Block Island RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay takes a break from the political circuit to take us for a ferry ride to Block Island. Block Island s just nine miles from the Rhode Island mainland but a world away. Home in January to just 1,000 hardy souls, in summer the pork-chop shaped island's population bulges to ten times that. Once...

By FLO JONIC http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrni/local-wrni-1018878.mp3 PROVIDENCE, RI – This week Rhode Island Public Radio is rolling out the next installment in what we call "One Square Mile" It's a series that takes a look at one Rhode Island community and tells its stories. This time, we're focusing on Block Island. Originally part of Massachusetts, Block Island has long been the pride of Rhode Island --- a place so undeveloped it's almost like going back in time. We...