Sunday Local Roundup: July 17, 2016

Hyper-Local News from Where You Live


Warwick moving forward with improvement plans

warwick public schoolsAt its meeting Tuesday night, the School Committee unanimously approved drafting a Letter of Construction Necessity to the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) as the first step toward securing state aid reimbursement funds for future construction projects and improvements to school buildings that are planned to be covered by a new voter bond referendum. The Beacon has more on what projects may be included in the improvements.

Lippitt teacher named Warwick Teacher of the Year

On the last day of school, 2nd-grade teacher Lorraine Gagnon was surprised by the Director of Elementary Education, with news she had been chosen as the Teacher of the Year for Warwick’s elementary schools. Gagnon, 59, currently teaches at Lippitt Elementary, but began her career in 1978, teaching first grade at a Catholic school. The Warwick Beacon has more on what makes Gagnon such a standout.

Bringing a movie dream to reality

Film camera chalkboard and rollBefore Kyle Cerilli passed away in 2014 from complications from muscular dystrophy, he wrote “Slimebuck,” a screenplay that focuses on a friendly alien discovered by two children in a plot that’s “E.T. meets Home Alone.” Now, Cerilli’s family has teamed up with a local director to help bring the story to the big screen. The Beacon has more on the efforts and how you can help.

Preparations underway for St. Mary’s Feast

Chris Buonanno, secretary of the St. Mary’s Feast Society, and Joe Macera, a trustee of the society, work together to hang the first set of lights. HERALD PHOTO BY STEVE POPIEL

Familiar summer sights – the lights, the Italian and American flags, the banners – now adorn Cranston Street, Phenix Avenue, and Itri Square. They mark the impending arrival of St. Mary’s Feast, which returns July 20-24 for its 111th installment. The Cranston Herald has more on what it takes to pull off this longstanding tradition.

Hoping to restore East’s historic entryway


Jim Carr of Cranston is a member of the Cranston High School East class of 1981, and he’s hoping some of his fellow alumni and local members of the community will help him out with a special project – restoring the majestic wooden entryway doors to the school, formerly known as Cranston High School, when there was just one high school in the city. The Cranston Herald has more on the efforts.

Off and Running: New track opens in Narragansett


Monday night was an exciting evening for Narragansett runners, as the new, eight-lane track at the high school was officially opened. The track is part of a multi-year, multi-million dollar project that became the Narragansett Athletic Complex – equipped with an impressive green field, bleacher seats, an elevator to assist the handicapped and a press box. The Narragansett Times has more on the project.


Beach access focus of upcoming event

The Westerly Sun

As a child, Gina Fuller jumped on her bicycle, rode to the far end of Atlantic Avenue in Misquamicut, and walked onto the beach for countless days of fun in the sun. Now, she is concerned that access to the beach from that spot and others is in jeopardy. To draw attention to what she calls “disappearing” beach access points, Fuller is organizing a group day at the beach. The Westerly Sun has more on the event and the ongoing debate that spawned.

Osprey monitors in short supply

Two active osprey nests at the Wood River Golf Course in Hopkinton are evidence of the resurgent osprey population in the region. | Harold Hanka, The Westerly Sun

The Audubon Society of Rhode Island is looking for volunteer osprey nest monitors in Westerly and other southern Rhode Island communities. There are approximately 12 nests in Westerly alone, and only a handful of monitors. The Westerly Sun has more on how you can help.

New life for Hopkinton treasure

The Hopkinton Historical Association has received a grant to cover the cost of replacing the windows of the historic Meeting House on Townhouse Road. | Harold Hanka, The Westerly Sun

The Hopkinton Meeting House sits on Town House Road, across the street from the Town Hall. Built in 1790, the white, wooden building is unassuming but much-loved. The Sun details how a grant is helping to give this history building a much-needed facelift.

Farmers market provides local flavor

Harold Hanka, The Westerly Sun

With children and dogs in tow, shoppers dressed in summer attire chatted and strolled from vendor to vendor, filling their carry-all bags with fresh produce, baked goods, granola, seafood and flowers at Friday’s farmer market on the front lawn of the Church of the Holy Spirit at 4150 Old Post Road. The Sun has more on what you can expect to find at the market and when you can make a trip.


Teen campaigns for sidewalks after friend’s death

bear hill road
Photo: Joseph B. Nadeau | The Pawtucket Times

The two and half months following the death of 18-year-old Carl John III have been difficult for many Cumberland residents, including local high school student Reece Franklin. However, Franklin is not letting his grief get the best of him. Instead, he is leading an effort to have more sidewalks installed in his community to reduce the chances of pedestrians being struck by motor vehicles and fatally injured like John was. Read more in The Times.

New trial ordered for Tempest, Jr.

raymond beaver tempestIn a sharply divided decision, the Rhode Island Supreme Court ordered a new trial for Raymond D. “Beaver” Tempest Jr., affirming a lower court ruling that vacated his conviction in the 1982 bludgeoning and strangulation murder of Doreen C. Picard of Woonsocket. Get complete coverage in The Call.

A mission to build bridges

(WPRI/ Madeleine Wright)
(WPRI/ Madeleine Wright)

With the nation’s police mired in some of the most turbulent and deadly relations with African Americans since the 1960s, a Woonsocket law enforcement officer went to Washington, D.C., on a mission to find ways to build bridges with minority communities. Details are in The Call.

Hollywood coming to Pawtucket

Jack BlackPawtucket is one of three locations in Rhode Island where “The Polka King,” a movie starring Jack Black, will be shot, continuing the Ocean State’s popularity with filmmakers. The other sites are Providence and Cranston. Catch the story in The Times.


Farm visits bring smiles

If you can’t visit the farm, Dawn Cordeiro will bring it to you, complete with live, furry animals. That’s just what she did Tuesday afternoon, bringing smiles to many faces at Johnston’s Cherry Hill Manor. The Johnston Sun Rise has more on this wild visit.


Field set for Tiverton elections

Voting BoothIn another year of cuts and challenges, one incumbent is seeking one of the six available seats on the Tiverton Budget Committee. The Fall River Herald News has more on how the races are shaping up.

‘Ball Kids’ keep matches moving

Lexi and Matt Brenner, 14-year-old twins from Barrington, are among the volunteer "ball kids" who chase tennis balls during matches at the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships in Newport. The Providence Journal/Sandor Bodo
The Providence Journal/Sandor Bodo

The best ball kids are the ones you never notice. That’s how Becky Silva put it one day this week as her cadre of teen volunteers dove into the pressure cooker that courts can become at the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships, an annual stop on the pro tour. The Providence Journal has more on the invisible hands that help the tournament run.



Family: RI child welfare system needs ‘fundamental change’

berube family“We want to change the system.” That, says Mary Beth Berube, is why she, her husband and son agreed to share their story with The Providence Journal. “It needs a real sweeping,” says David. “The shades need to be opened and the sun needs to come in.” With system reform in mind, the Berubes spoke candidly of their experiences in a series of interviews and emails and granted The Journal access to hundreds of pages of records they obtained from the Department of Children, Youth and Families and other agencies involved with their adopted son since his birth.


Correia administration taps new Community Maintenance director

generic fall river signAfter a major misstep to hire a new director for the recently reorganized Department of Community Maintenance, the administration has announced the new department head begins his tenure on Monday. The Fall River Herald News has more on who was hired, how much he’ll make, and what his duties will be.

LNG proposal floated in Somerset


somerset lngL-N-G. Those three letters conjure up a range of emotions in and around Greater Fall River in light of the long “David vs. Goliath” fight the region eventually won with the withdrawal of the highly controversial Hess LNG proposal for the Weaver’s Cove site in Fall River. Hess’ proposal for the Weaver’s Cove site is dead as a doornail as the applications have been withdrawn and the site along the Taunton River has now been sold to a developer. But LNG is back. The Fall River Herald News editorial board takes a look at the proposal and what it could mean for the area.

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